Will 17-year-old ambulance driver Juan Ochoa manage to beat the competition and be first to reach the scene of the accident? It almost seems a game to him as he speeds like a madman through the streets of Mexico City, accompanied by his father and younger brother. But things get serious when they get to their destination: they’ve got some tough work to do.
On top of that, there’s always a chance they’ll have to deal with obstruction from corrupt police officers, or patients who can’t or won’t pay for transportation. Operating a private ambulance is a family business for the Ochoas—a necessary evil in a city where the government funds only 45 ambulances for a population of nine million.
In cinema verité style, American documentary filmmaker Luke Lorentzen shows us what Juan and his family members go through night after night: from the silences before the storms to the intense, heart-pumping moments as they risk life and limb careering through the streets of the metropolis. Lorentzen brings it all up very close in impressive style.